Margaret Holt speaks to Wayne State students on Sept. 11, 2015.By Charlie Kadado

Chicago Tribune Standards Editor and UNITY Board Member Margaret Holt shared her nearly 45 years of media experience on Sept. 11, 2015, with journalism students at Wayne State University in Detroit and told students to take heed about building credibility brand.

Holt spoke to a group of 20 students from the university’s Journalism Institute for Media Diversity – a nationally acclaimed honors program for aspiring media professionals.

“It makes me so happy to see many of you on the same path I’m on,” Holt said. “Follow the path you’re passionate about.”

Holt said students should learn to be thorough and accurate as young reporters.

“Your mom is right when she told you about your permanent record,” she told students, referring to a journalist’s credibility. “Double check your facts and make sure they’re actionable.”

Freshman journalism student Aleanna Siacon said she learned that ethical dilemmas should be carefully considered.

“I really learned a lot about the value of ethics,” Siacon said. “I know to always be more aware of my work, and to understand a story fully before reporting.”

Senior journalism student Alisha Dixon added that it’s a journalist’s ethical responsibility to fact-check.

“(Holt) gave not only a professional perspective, but a message of personal responsibility in journalism,” Dixon said. “You should always give your 100 percent.”

Holt encouraged students to intern at diverse media outlets, and recognize that accuracy should always be a priority.

“The work that you do matters,” she said. “You never know how a story is going to impact someone’s life.”

Charlie Kadado is a student at Wayne State University’s Journalism Institute for Media Diversity in Detroit, Michigan.

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